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Can Natural Language Processing Boost Digital Marketing?

Can Natural Language Processing Boost Digital Marketing?

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Does Natural Language Processing (NLP) sound complicated? That’s because it is. NLP is, in fact, a form of artificial intelligence (AI), which is technical by nature. But, contrary to common belief, it’s not as obscure as it seems. Let’s see how you could harness NLP to boost your digital marketing and how it relates to other AIs in its category, such as Natural Language Understanding (NLU) and Natural Language Generation (NLG).

Natural Language Processing uncovered

As explained above, NLP is part of the AI technology group, including machine learning, deep learning, Natural Language Understanding, Natural Language Generation, image recognition, fingerprint recognition, etc. But fewer people know that NLP is also responsible for a computer’s capability to read and translate text. Essentially, NLP is an essential component of machine translation , being responsible for:

Spelling and grammar checking
Syntax and context

NLP is particularly good at detecting nuances of human language, including slang, informal forms of expression, and even regional accents, enabling automatic translators and translation engines such as Google Translate or DeepL to provide as accurate as possible solutions in the target language.
We said NLP “understands” syntax and semantics. In doing so, it helps machines think and read like humans. This is also how search algorithms work. If you ever wondered how Google or Bing know what information to pull up for you, even though your search term is misspelt or wrongly phrased, you should know that’s NLP at its best.
NLP helps search engines identify the intent and context of each search query you enter to serve you relevant content. For a digital marketer, this means that NLP can be leveraged to boost online campaigns to ensure they reach the right people or organisations that can derive benefits from your content.

Leveraging NLP in digital marketing

Not so long ago, marketers created and optimised content solely for search engines. As long as your content had the right keyword density, you could be sure your content would be indexed. If it only stayed that way… After a while, Google engineers thought it was about time they changed indexing algorithms for which Panda update is to blame (or maybe not). The purpose of this tweak was to ensure that users were only served relevant and valuable content.

How does NLP benefit digital marketing, again?

NLP enables you to process a heap of language data collected from online searches – website visits or social media – and use that information to improve your digital marketing campaigns across all channels. It’s all about the search. Mainly, Natural Language Processing algorithms enhance your:

Lead capture & qualification. Google receives roughly 5.8 billion search queries per day. In turn, this means that regardless of your type of business, the opportunities to find new clients online are limitless. NLP can help you better handle customer queries by using bots to collect data about their website visitors and better reach them. Chatbots are also an intelligent way to qualify leads. They can help you identify customers ready to complete a purchase and pass those “hot leads” over to your sales team.

Sentiment & behaviour analysis. NLP also helps you analyse the behaviour and habits of your potential customers according to their search queries. This enables you to scale more easily and tailor your messaging accordingly. NLP-powered solutions such as social listening tools give you a hint about positive, negative, or neutral terms that people use to describe their interaction with your company, products or services, but most importantly, how they perceive your brand.

Reach. Client data is the driving force of any business today. Massive amounts of text and speech data are already stored on the web. The quick rise in popularity of digital assistants like Alexa or Siri is living proof.

Given its technical capabilities to pick up words from audio materials, NLP enables you to target users using voice-activated devices to search for information online.

SEO ranking. Generally, people search how they speak. For example, someone may enter “Steps to update your LinkedIn profile” or “How to update my Linkedin profile” or “LinkedIn profile updates – how to do it right”, Google will pull up the same information, regardless. Your aim should be to use the right combination of keywords to help Google understand what your content is about and include it in the search results.

Content creation. What would marketing be without content, right? As a marketer, you may probably be constantly thinking about content quality. How can you make your content appealing but also searchable? NLP can help you identify the hottest topics in your industry (skyscraper SEO technique) and create your own content around them. NLP allows you to pinpoint any gaps in your content strategy and fill in the blanks effectively. Also, regular content audits and competitor analysis are equally effective in building and optimising your content strategy.

Client segmentation & creating buyer personas. Last but not least, Natural Language Processing can be and is leveraged nowadays by an increasing number of businesses to round up client data from a wide range of sources – email marketing, website visits, social media, landing pages, feedback forms, client support tickets, etc. You can use this information to segment your audience and create buyer personas (client profiles) based on how they interact with your content/brand. Buyer personas further enable you to tailor your content and marketing strategy to their specific needs and wants.

Natural Language Processing and the other “Naturals”

So far, so good. But Natural Language Processing works in tandem with other AI technologies – NLU and NLG. They complement NLP so that you can reap the most benefits of your digital marketing. However, there is a very fine line between them. Read on and discover new ways to enhance your digital marketing.

NLU is the indispensable element of your digital marketing or PPC responsible for understanding nuance, distinguishing between formal and informal context, and summarising text. In comparison, NLG underpins content creation. If you use GMail, you may have seen that the platform offers you suggestions for completing your sentence. That’s NLG and is particularly effective in generating meta descriptions and meta titles. Of course, there is still a long way until we can use NLG for creating whole articles or website content. But one thing is certain: AI is here to stay and enhance our marketing, not take our place.

Need more tips on SEO or marketing content creation? Feel free to drop us a line below. We know a thing or two about content marketing that we could gladly share. See you soon!

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